American Library Association
Recruitment Clearinghouse

Types of Recruitment Initiatives
Financial Assistance
scholarships, stipends, grants, reduced/flexible work schedules
  • The American Library Association offers many general scholarships along with specialized scholarships targeted to support staff, youth services, school media specialists, and members of underrepresented groups. Look for information about the ALA Scholarship Program at under the heading "Awards & Scholarships."

  • The American Library Association provides a directory of Accredited Programs. Contact individual graduate library education programs for information about specific financial assistance opportunities available at that institution.

  • The annual Financial Assistance for Library and Information Studies directory describes awards from state library agencies, national and state library associations, local libraries, academic institutions, and foundations who give some form of financial assistance for undergraduate and/or graduate education programs in library and information studies.

  • The Association of Research Libraries Initiative to Recruit a Diverse Workforce offers a stipend of up to $5,000 to attract and expose new library professionals from underrepresented groups to careers in academic and research libraries.

  • The California State Library coordinates the Public Library Staff Education Program, a grant program for public library and county law library employees pursuing a graduate library education degree. The program is described in an article entitled, "Finding and Funding Future Librarians -- California Style," by Kathleen Low in the October 2004 issue of American Libraries, pages 37-38.

  • The Central Jersey Regional Library Cooperative provides an extensive list of scholarship links on the Become a Librarian! webpage.

  • The Delaware Higher Education Commission Librarian and Archivist Incentive Program provides merit-based awards for tuition, fees, and other direct educational expenses for Delaware residents enrolled full- or part-time in an ALA-accredited program.

  • The Delaware Library Association offers two graduate library education scholarships.

  • The Delaware Valley Chapter of the Association of College and Research Libraries offers an annual stipend of up to $1,000 to graduate library students who have demonstrated interest in academic librarianship. For more information contact Lisa Stillwell, Information Literacy Librarian, Franklin & Marshall College, at

  • The Library Information Technology Association sponsors four LITA scholarships to encourage the entry of qualified persons into the library and information technology field.

  • A cooperative recruitment initiative between Southern University and Louisiana State University is described in "Let Recruitment Begin with Me," by Emma Bradford Perry in the May 2004 issue of American Libraries, pages 36-38.

  • The University of Delaware Library Assembly of Professional Staff Library Student Assistant Scholarship offers an annual $500 award to a current or former University of Delaware Library student assistant.

Work Experience
internships, trainee programs, volunteer opportunities
Job Shadow Days
  • The American Library Association Job Shadow Day Planning Notebook provides essential information for planning and participating in a Job Shadow Day event.

  • Become a Librarian for a Day! lists job shadow and volunteer opportunities in New Jersey.

  • The Chicago Library System Groundhog Job Shadow Day is featured in an American Libraries special report by Linda Wallace on pages 38-39 of the May 2001 issue.

  • The North Suburban Library System (Illinois) hosts a Job Shadow Day webpage.

  • Sutton, Margot. "Job Shadow Day: Recruitment to the Profession," College & Research Libraries News 61, no. 4 (April 2000). Summarizes job shadow days in a number of academic libraries.

Recruitment Events
career fairs, open houses, panel programs
  • Guidelines for Hosting a Recruiting Open House from the Become a Librarian! website.

  • The ALANA Library Career Reception held March 4, 2004 at the University of Massachusetts, W.E.B. DuBois Library provided information to minority students about library career opportunities.

  • The AASL Recruitment to School Librarianship webpage offers tips on preparing for and participating in a career day event.

  • Morton, Andrew, et al. "Active Recruitment Within Academic Libraries." Virginia Libraries 49, no. 4 (October-December 2003): 10-12. Describes an informal minature career fair at the University of Richmond.

Promotional Materials
posters, videos, brochures, pamphlets, buttons, pens, misc.
  • The ALA Online Store includes a variety of posters, bookmarks, keychains, promoting libraries and reading that make fun give aways at career events. The digital library art software may be used to create announcements, flyers, and other event materials.

  • Two "Become a Librarian" brochures created by the Central Jersey Regional Library Cooperative in cooperation with the New Jersey Library Network may be downloaded and printed at no charge.

  • Faces of a Profession, This 7-minute recruitment video produced by the Association of College and Research Libraries and the Association of Research Libraries in 2003, highlights the role of academic librarians and the satisfactions to be realized in the profession. It includes interviews with academic librarians who discuss what they do and why they made their career choices.

  • Looking For Leaders In The Information Age This fast-paced, 8-minute video produced in 2001 by the Ohio Library Council with a "new media" look generates excitement about the people and jobs in libraries. It profiles library and information professionals as they talk about their careers in the information age and explores the many career opportunities available to those with a library and information science degree. Support materials include multiple copies of five separate brochures and a fact sheet outlining scholarship information. Gain an overview of the career and degree requirements. Learn about the unique opportunities available in academic, public, school and special libraries. Use this informative recruitment tool in your library or community - wherever you want to showcase a career whose time has come.

  • "Me? A Librarian?!! Produced by the Ohio Library Council in 1998, this upbeat, 10-minute video is designed to interest middle through high school students in library careers. It features two teen-agers with high-tempo background music. The video dispels common myths about librarians and their work. Librarians talk about their careers, where they work, and the excitement of being on the forefront of today's information society. The video can be used for career days, at library open house, or circulated in the library's AV collection. Accompanied by an Instructor's Guide, 25 student handouts.

statistical data, government reports, professional news articles
  • "Guidelines for Choosing a Master's Program in Library & Information Studies," a publication of the American Library Association, describes factors such as admissions, curricula, distance education, financial aid, and placement services to consider when selecting a graduate library education program.

  • Hayden, Carla. "Librarianship: A Career As Diverse As You Are." The Black Collegian (Fall 2003): 40-41.

  • Kaufman, Paula T. "Where Do the Next 'We' Come From? Recruiting, Retaining, and Developing Our Successors." ARL: A Bimonthly Report on Research Library Issues and Actions from ARL, CNI, and SPARC, no. 221 (April 2002): 1-5.

  • "Librarians: Information Experts in the Information Age" by Olivia Crosby in the Winter 2000 issue of Occupational Outlook Quarterly profiles the work of several librarians and a variety of career specializations.

  • The website provides a selection of library career development books.

  • The Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2004-05 Edition, notes that the number of librarian jobs is projected to increase 10 to 20 percent between 2002 and 2012. The Handbook describes the nature of work, working conditions, employment patterns, education requirements, job outlook, and other occupations related to librarianship.

  • "Places an MLS Can Take You" by Linda K. Wallace in the March 2002 issue of American Libraries profiles librarians in unique government, non-profit, and internet positions.

  • Spear, Marth. "The Top 10 Reasons to be a Librarian." American Libraries (October 2002): 54-55.

  • Stevens, Jen and Rosemary Streatfeiled. Recruitment and Retention, SPEC Kit 276. Washington, D.C.: Association of Research Libraries, September 2003.

  • "Straight Answers from E.J. Josey," an interview on recruitment in the November 2004 issue of American Libraries.

  • U.S. News & World Report provides a listing of the Top Library Science Programs along with rankings of specialty programs such as archives and preservation, information systems, and school library media.

  • Wilder, Stanley J. "New Hires in Research Libraries: Demographic Trends and Hiring Priorities." ARL: A Bimonthly Report on Research Library Issues and Actions from ARL, CNI, and SPARC, no. 221 (April 2002): 5-8.

Recruitment Websites
  • Become a Librarian! sponsored by the Central Jersey Regional Library Cooperative

  • Careers in Librarianship sponsored by the University of Delaware Library

  • Librarians -- We're breaking the mold sponsored by the Oklahoma Library Association, Career Recruitment and Retention Committee

  • offers career development resources for new librarians and information professionals, MLS students and those considering a library-related career. The site features practical articles contributed by information professionals, along with links to online and print resources.

  • Metro Magnet sponsored by the Metropolitan New York Library Council

This page is maintained by the ALA Recruitment Assembly in liaison with the ALA Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment. Please send recommendations for additions or changes to jbrewer at
Last update January 5, 2005.